Following the fight, Covington claimed referee, Marc Goddard stopped the fight too early, but Usman doesn’t agree.
“That’s the thing about me being rational and trying to see it from all sides, absolutely [it was a good stoppage],” Usman explained when speaking to MMA Fighting. “Because taking myself out of it as the fighter that won and also taking myself out of it looking at it from Colby’s perspective but looking at it from the referee’s perspective. I hit him with some big, big shots in there.
“Hitting him with the right hand that hurt him. That clearly hurt him. Hitting him with the left hand that hurt him. Hitting him with a series of punches against the cage that definitely hurt him and then the big right hand that just sat him down really bad. So he’s hurt really bad, he got up, I let him up trying to fight back up and then hit him with another shot that just dropped him. For a referee looking at all of that, at the end of the day, you’re sprawled out and I’m beating on the side of your head, the referee’s got to protect you from yourself sometimes.”
In the end, Kamaru Usman knows there is no controversy surrounding the stoppage but is willing to run things back with Covington in the future.
“You can say it’s controversial but you have to see the referee just saw you take all those big shots in a row,” Usman concluded. “He has to be able to step in to protect you from yourself so you can live to fight another day.”